Everyone experiences stress and anxiety at some point in their lives. Still, when these problems rise to extreme levels or persist over long periods, they can get in the way of your daily activities, negatively impact your life, and rob you of happiness. Prescription medications can provide a solution for some people; however, many prefer to take a more natural approach or combine natural remedies with traditional therapeutics. Read on to discover how to reduce stress naturally and how l-theanine anxiety supplements can help.
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a feeling of worry that you naturally experience when you're in a stressful situation. When people discuss anxiety relief, they are typically looking for help with an anxiety disorder. An anxiety disorder is a mental illness marked by excessive levels of anxiety that reoccur or continue over an extended period of time. In the case of generalized anxiety disorder, the feelings often have no particular cause. Other forms of anxiety disorders like social anxiety and phobias are related to a specific trigger.
What Are the Symptoms of Anxiety?
Symptoms of an anxiety disorder include:
- Nervousness and restlessness
- An intense feeling of doom or danger
- Rapid breathing
- Increased heart rate
- Difficulty concentrating and sleeping
- Gastrointestinal issues like indigestion and diarrhea
How Does Stress Affect the Body?
Stress can cause many unpleasant symptoms, including:
- Muscle aches and tension
- Chest pain
- Sensation of a racing heart
- Jaw clenching
- Sexual dysfunction
- Difficulty concentrating
- Increased infections like colds and flu
- High blood pressure
Why Natural Stress Relief?
There are many reasons why people may wish to take a natural approach when trying to reduce stress and ease symptoms of anxiety, such as:
- Concerns About Side Effects. Some people are susceptible to certain prescription medications and experience unpleasant side effects from taking them. While l-theanine stress relief supplements and other natural remedies may also pose a risk for side effects, some people may better tolerate them.
- Worries About Addiction. Some medications used to address particular symptoms of anxiety may be habit-forming. People who have struggled with addiction in the past or have a family history of addiction may prefer to use theanine calming supplements and other natural remedies.
- Desire to Increase Efficacy. When traditional medical interventions fail to do enough to reduce stress and anxiety symptoms, people may choose to add l-theanine or another natural remedy to their care plan.
- Moral, Religious or Ethical Beliefs. Many people choose to rely on natural remedies for personal reasons.
What Is L-Theanine?
L-theanine, or simply theanine, is an amino acid. Typically, amino acids are considered essential nutrients because your body requires them to produce proteins. Your body does not need to have theanine to function properly, but some people use it as a natural remedy.
Scientific research shows that theanine can cross the blood-brain barrier quickly after it is taken by mouth. Early studies indicate that the amino acid may:
- Improve Focus. One study found that young adults who took an l-theanine dosage of 95 milligrams with 40 milligrams of caffeine were better able to focus during challenging mental tasks and reported feeling more alert.
- Increase Immunity. Studies suggest that l-theanine may reduce the frequency of respiratory infections or shorten the duration of symptoms. In addition, the amino acid may have the ability to reduce inflammation.
- Ease anxiety symptoms. Studies into l-theanine and anxiety show that the amino acid can address symptoms like increased heart rate and high blood pressure. It may work by interfering with the release of certain brain chemicals that trigger the physical stress response.
- Assist with sleep. One study found that boys with ADHD who took 400 mg of l-theanine daily scored higher on sleep percentage and efficiency tests. This has led many people to use l theanine sleep supplements for insomnia related to stress and anxiety.
Does L-Theanine Relax You?
Anecdotal evidence and scientific research indicate that l-theanine may have a calming effect on the body and mind. The amino acid is reported to produce a sense of calm without sedating the body. Known as a relaxed, yet alert, state, theanine induces this by stimulating the production of alpha brain waves, allowing the body to feel calm yet completely aware at the same time.
Sources of L-Theanine
Black, green, and white teas and Xerocomus badius mushrooms are rich in l-theanine. Because these foods are not a common feature in western diets, supplements are a popular alternative. L-theanine supplements come in a variety of forms, including capsules, tablets, and powders.
How Much L-Theanine for Stress Relief and Anxiety?
The L-theanine dosage for anxiety is generally 50 to 200 mg. Most experts suggest that people begin taking the lowest l-theanine dosage for relaxation possible and then increase gradually if symptoms persist.
L-Theanine With Melatonin and GABA
In addition to standalone l-theanine supplements, you can also find combination supplements that contain the amino acid. One of the most popular options includes GABA, l-theanine, and melatonin. GABA is another amino acid that functions as a chemical messenger in the brain. Your body uses GABA to inhibit nerve signals and decrease the activity of the nervous system. Melatonin is a hormone manufactured by your body. Its primary job is to regulate your sleep-wake cycle. Both GABA and melatonin supplements are taken to calm the mind and body. There is some evidence to suggest that they are especially effective when taken with l-theanine. Combination supplements make it easy to reap the benefits of all three, as they feature balanced dosages of each key ingredient.
Tips for Taking an L-Theanine Calming Supplement
Keep the following tips in mind if you are using l-theanine alone or opting to take a supplement that contains melatonin, GABA, and L-theanine:
- Consult your doctor. Because l-theanine can cause side effects in some people and may interfere with some medications and other supplements, you should check with your medical provider before beginning a supplement regimen.
- Combine l-theanine with other stress and anxiety relief techniques. An approach that combines l-theanine supplements in conjunction with other lifestyle-based relaxation techniques like deep breathing can enhance overall effectiveness of a stress-reduction program. You may also want to consider seeing a therapist to learn strategies for dealing with stress.
- Only use the supplement as directed. A high-quality supplement will have a theanine dosage for anxiety and stress relief based on research into safety and effectiveness. Follow the instructions for use provided by the manufacturer unless your medical provider gives you other advice.